Spring has sprung, and while you’re cleaning out cupboards, scrubbing the fridge, and rotating your wardrobe, don’t forget to pay some attention to your floors. A home's flooring is a significant investment frequently overlooked during spring cleaning. It’s possible to keep your floors looking great for years to come if you take a few precautions and provide sufficient care and maintenance.
Get to Cleaning
Our first suggestion, regardless of the type of flooring you have, is to vacuum or sweep it to keep dirt and debris from soiling or scratching it.
Vacuuming is essential for basic floor maintenance, which is especially true for carpet maintenance because it removes dirt that may be trapped in the carpet fibers. Carpeted floors should be vacuumed twice a week to remove loose dirt and debris. When it comes to vacuum strength and type, different fibers and manufacturers have different requirements. So before you start, double-check your maintenance instructions to see which vacuums are safe to use on your specific carpet.
If you have hardwood floors, make sure the beater bar on your vacuum is disengaged or use a brushless vacuum then follow up with a dry mop to ensure a thorough cleaning. A wet mop can be used on tile, luxury vinyl, or other water-resistant flooring. Check that any cleaners you use are warranty approved for your specific floors—the best way to ensure this is to read the care and maintenance instructions provided by the manufacturer of your floor.
Rearrange Your Furniture and Area Rugs
The natural aging process of hardwood floors and the crushing of carpet fibers results in the need to rearrange rugs and furniture frequently to avoid excessive pile crushing, minimize traffic patterns, and allow wood flooring to age evenly.
Professional Carpet Cleanings
Regardless of how frequently you vacuum, your carpet will require professional cleaning every 12 to 18 months to maintain its warranty. If your carpet is subject to heavy use, you may need to have it professionally cleaned at more frequent intervals. Professionals in your area can be found on the Carpet and Rug Institute's website, carpet-rug.org .
Most warranties require hot water extraction to be maintained. Some styles, however, must be cleaned in a different manner. Check the manufacturer's warranty guidelines for the cleaning method for your carpet, and be sure to keep your cleaning receipts as proof of maintenance service in case of a warranty claim.
Refresh Doormats and Trim Pet Nails
Doormats help to keep your floors clean by preventing dirt and debris from entering your home; make sure to clean them on a regular basis. Rubber, foam-backed, or plastic mats should not be used on laminate, luxury vinyl, or hardwood floors because they can trap moisture and discolor or ruin the floor. Woven and heat set backings allow for air flow and should be used in conjunction with rug pads to protect your hardwood floors.
Additionally, you can help your floors stay clean and beautiful all year by keeping pet paws and nails trimmed. Pet nails and paws should be kept cut and free of dirt, gravel, grease, oil, and other debris to prevent scratching of floors and carpet snags. It’s a sign that your pet's nails are too long when you can hear them clicking on hard surfaces.
Reseal Natural Stone Floors
Marble, travertine, limestone, granite, quartzite, slate, and sandstone are the most common types of natural stone flooring. Because natural stone is porous, it necessitates ongoing care and maintenance, such as resealing with a penetrating sealer.
Penetrating sealers protect your natural stone from stains, bacteria growth, and acid erosion. The frequency of resealing is determined by the type of installation space and the volume of traffic in that space; the general rule of thumb is to reseal natural stone tiles once per year.
Clean Smarter, Not Harder
Establishing a regular cleaning routine will make spring cleaning easier by preventing the accumulation of dirt, dust, and debris throughout the year. If you have a regular source of messiness in your space (plants, pet food bowls, etc.), use catch mats, drain pans, or saucers to catch spilled water, dirt, crumbs, and other messes. Furthermore, if you have hard-surface flooring (especially hardwood, laminate, or vinyl) in a high-traffic area of your home, consider laying down area rugs to reduce wear and tear.
For more on the care and maintenance of flooring, visit bit.ly/how_to_clean_floors .
Elysia O’Brien is the digital & data administrator at Coyle Carpet One.
Coyle Carpet One
250 W. Beltline Highway
Madison, WI 53713